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Rembrandt IP Management

February 17, 2008

Some analysts are concerned that patents held by "patent troll" Rembrandt IP Management will be used successfully against cable companies and others.

In cases originally spread across federal courts in Delaware, New York and Texas, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Charter Communications, Cox Communications and Cablevision Systems face claims that their cable-modem services infringe eight patents now held by Rembrandt, and that their video services violate a ninth one related to digital-TV transmission.

Separately, ABC, CBS, NBC Universal and Fox — as well as manufacturer Sharp Electronics — face suits alleging infringement of Rembrandt’s patent on digital TV transmission.

According to an attorney close to the litigation, the firm has sought to collect half of 1% of all revenue generated from services that allegedly infringe on the data and video patents.

“If they’re successful, this could affect everything from the cost of cable service to the price of TVs,” said the attorney close to the litigation, who spoke only on condition of anonymity.

Regulators Reshape the Internet

February 15, 2008

It is pretty amazing to see how many separate issues are surfacing that could affect the future of the internet. The FCC and government have their plates full deciding what to do with telcos and their potentially anti-competitive practices.

The first issue at hand is net neutrality. Congressman Edward Markey (D-Mass.) introduced the  “Internet Freedom Law” this week.

Rather than detailing specific regulations, the new Markey bill calls on the FCC to conduct a “thorough inquiry” to determine “broadband policies that will promote openness, competition, innovation, and affordable, ubiquitous broadband service for all.”   Part of the commission’s task is to conduct an “Internet freedom assessment” to determine whether or not service providers are adhering to “the Commission’s Broadband Policy Statement of August, 2005,” which prohibits actions that might interfere with users’ ability to access or use lawful content and services over the Internet and to attach any legal device that does not harm the network.

Next up is the case of BitTorrent and specifically, the fact that Comcast has been caught throttling traffic from this peer to peer file sharing network often used to send and receive videos. Comcast says they are within their rights to throttle bandwidth as needed to ensure things like voice get the proper quality of service while others are concerned that throttling bandwidth relating to applications violates the concept of net neutrality.

Finally, the issue of short codes has surfaced once again as Verizon has denied the use of these codes to Rebtel, a competitive service provider and others.

This month could be looked back upon as a pivotal one in the world of Internet freedom and the shaping of the world's net policies.









Unprotected SIP

February 14, 2008

Increase Marketing Spend in a Recession

February 14, 2008

Telco 2.0 - the Microsoft way

February 14, 2008

The following are comments from Ovum SVP, Brett Azuma on Microsoft and what they are up to in service provider communications. I thought this was worth passing along.

Microsoft provided an update on its Telco 2.0 vision. The analyst telebriefing indicated that Microsoft's revenues for the Communications Sector exceeded $2bn in 2007.

Verizon's Network Upgrades

February 14, 2008



If you haven't been paying attention, you will have missed the fact that Verizon Wireless is investing like mad around the US to improve their mobile network. The quality of the wireless network was amazing to begin with and now this. VZW puts out a release every few days about a new region they are enhancing.

Perhaps all wireless companies are spending the same amount but if so they are not taking advantage of the free publicity that comes with putting our frequent press releases on their progress.

In my experience, companies who put out frequent releases do better than those who do not.

The more the editors in the world see your name surrounded by positive news the more likely they are to write nice things about you.

If you have any doubts, read to the end.

Today's release is about improving the network in Kansas, Missouri and Southern Illinois.











Vonage: Good and Bad News

February 14, 2008

Covad has Wider Loss

February 13, 2008

Covad reported a fourth quarter net loss of $11.9 million or $0.04 per share, compared to a net loss of $8.4 million or $0.03 per share in the previous year quarter.

Net revenues for the quarter increased to $121.6 million from $119.4 million in the last year quarter.

On average, five analysts polled by First Call/Thomson Financial expected loss of $0.01 per share, while analysts estimated revenues of $125.03 million for the fourth quarter.

For fiscal 2007, net loss was $43.0 million or $0.14 per share, compared to a net loss of $13.9 million or $0.05 per share in the last year.

Net revenues for the year were $484.2 million, up from $474.3 million in the prior year.

It seems the company's fortunes turned for the worse a few years back around the time the company stopped advertising and changed its focus from being an IP communications company to a broadband company. This move was accompanied by a management change as well.

I am not sure what the company's future holds but I keep hearing the question "Is Covad still around" from readers and attendees at shows. This is usually not a good sign.

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Forbes on Mobile World Congress

February 12, 2008

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